The federal government today announced residents of Prince Edward Island can expect faster rural internet and 5G wireless technology soon, as part of a new funding plan.
According to Infrastructure Canada, the government will contribute over $33.1 million via the Rural and Northern Infrastructure Stream of the Investing in Canada infrastructure plan.
PEI will provide $3.5 million, while Bell Canada and Xplornet combined will add over $37 million. According to the federal government, “funding will only be disbursed to Bell Canada and Xplornet as performance and construction based milestones are met, and this will be closely monitored by the province.”
According to Xplornet, they will bring Internet download speeds of up to 100 Mbps by early 2020 to PEI, made possible through fibre and 5G-ready wireless upgrades to existing networks via “state-of-the-art hybrid fibre wireless technology.”
Later in 2019, Xplornet will double speeds to bring customers 50 Mbps broadband internet.
Allison Lenehan, President and CEO of Xplornet, said in a statement, “At Xplornet, we are proud to serve rural Canadians. 5G technology is not just about urban Canada – we believe strongly that 5G can enable amazing broadband services wherever Canadians choose to live. We are looking forward to bringing 5G hybrid fibre wireless technology to Islanders and are grateful to both Governments for their continued support for rural broadband.”
Xplornet will utilize their 3500 MHz spectrum to bring 5G-ready service in PEI.
“As the largest investor in communications infrastructure in Prince Edward Island and throughout Atlantic Canada, Bell is proud to provide Islanders with expanded access to Canada’s most advanced broadband network and to the economic, community and social development opportunities that high-speed Internet access enables,” said Glen LeBlanc, Vice Chair, Atlantic, Bell Canada, in a statement.
PEI is set to hold a provincial election on October 7, 2019, while the Canadian federal election is set for October 21, 2019.